Dolls from the past
Pepes or Pepones
They were the most popular dolls for working-class children during the first half of XXth century. They were made of paperboard and the finishings were rude. Painted by immersion in one single colour, the mouth, eyes and eyebrows were drawn with simplicity and, frequently, asymmetric. Cheeks and hair had a slight note of colour. They were articulated dolls but screws were clearly visible in arms and hips.
They wore no shoes. Clothes were coarse, made of ordinary fabrics with no seams, sometimes cut with scissors in zigzag. These clothes were “buttoned” with thick iron nails that went through fabric and paperboard.
In spite of this, the Pepa must be considered as a childhood jewel for many girls that would never had known what playing with dolls was because their parents couldn’t afford the prize of a costly doll.
Today there are no much original Pepa dolls in good condition because they became useless when wet.
This model of Pepa is my own creation, inspired by a similar one from my collection, made in Catalonia. It is made of stucco (clay and natural gums). The dress is more elaborated and it also has a pair of sandals but the final resul is, in essence, the traditional Pepa.